France steps up terrorism alert for election

5th April 2007, Comments 0 comments

BORDEAUX, France, April 5, 2007 (AFP) - The French government said Thursday it was stepping up security to prevent a possible terrorist attack during the presidential election this month.

BORDEAUX, France, April 5, 2007 (AFP) - The French government said Thursday it was stepping up security to prevent a possible terrorist attack during the presidential election this month.

"France is under threat from a number of fundamentalist organisations and we must remain extrarordinarily vigilant," Interior Minister Francois Baroin said, announcing extra security at all candidate rallies and party headquarters.

Police said Thursday that anti-terrorism police have opened an investigation after death threats were made against the right-wing presidential frontrunner Nicolas Sarkozy.

The probe began on Monday after a television employee and official from the opposition Socialist Party received e-mail messages that read "Attack on Sarkozy, Lyon, April 5 2007."

Police have stepped up the security detail for Sarkozy, the candidate of the governing UMP party, who is due to travel Thursday to France's second city of Lyon for an election rally.

Sarkozy narrowly leads the race for the presidential election, taking place in two rounds on April 22 and May 6.

France has been singled out as a target by the Algerian Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat, which recently changed its name to the Al-Qaeda Organisation in the Lands of Islamic North Africa.

The country's national terror alert level is currently at "red", the third highest on a four-colour scale, with military patrols deployed in airports and main rail terminals.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

0 Comments To This Article